GM + Nikola = Tesla? Old world competitor and electric car startup team up

The new agreement was well received on the stock exchange: While Tesla posted double-digit percent losses on Tuesday due to not being included in the S&P 500, shares in GM rose by around 8 percent and Nikola even by 41 percent. Because before the start of trading, the old car group and the young electric car startup had announced a far-reaching cooperation, including a participation. The initial reaction on the market suggests that they are more likely to be able to stand up to Tesla as a group.

Nikola founder provokes Tesla fans

The name Nikola in the startup that was later founded is not the only provocation that Tesla fans see coming from him. Instead of just batteries like CEO Elon Musk at Tesla, the founder Trevor Milton also wants to install hydrogen fuel cells in electric pickups and trucks and advertises with much more range than Tesla. In addition, Nikola is suing Tesla for alleged design patent infringements in the semi-trailer truck. According to Milton, the company did not even want to bring an electric pickup onto the market, but decided in favor of it because the Tesla Cybertruck looks “like a door stopper”.

Because Milton could not initially say who was producing the Nikola Badger pickup, some Tesla fans interpreted his announcement as empty talk. But with the agreement with GM, this point has been clarified. The auto company, which this spring presented its new electric car course, including its own work with battery cells and raw materials, will supply Nikola with batteries and fuel cell systems for the Badger, reports the news agency Reuters. GM also designs the chassis architecture for the electric pickup and builds the factory for it – basically taking on almost all of the development and production.

Competition for Tesla Cybertruck and Semi

Like the Cybertruck with the Badger, Nikola Tesla’s Semi wants to compete with its own trucks. For these too, GM is now to supply fuel cells, even exclusively outside of Europe. In return, the company will receive Nikola shares worth $ 2 billion, which make up 11 percent. In addition, there is another $ 2 billion directly and in the form of the value of CO2 credits, which Nikola receives for the locally emission-free badger and which are now to be credited to 80 percent GM.

GM wants to bring a number of electric cars onto the market itself. One of the first is the electric Hummer, which will be available from 2021 and will then accelerate hardly less quickly than the Tesla Cybertruck. The badger from the new partner Nikola is still not planned for the end of 2022.


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